Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Wild Goose 2014 Festival
Found myself wandering around the Appalachian Trail listening to the squawking of a Wild Goose.
Thank you to all that made that happen!
That list is unscrupulously long and highly distinguished and you can mostly find them on the Isle of Misfit’s with the most brilliant of toys!
The intentionality of the Goose is much more than the sum of it’s presenters, vendors and performers.
It has the sense of a “home coming” of sorts. A “Next Year in Jerusalem” moving meditation for diasporic faith.
Where our desire for unity and being known in the greater cloud of witnesses dare to surface. The desire to be loved in our difference as much as we are loved in our likeness. The desire to sip from the cup of communion without hesitation of judgement or shame. The desire to honour our relationships physically, emotionally and spiritually.
These are the reasons why i came to Wild Goose.
Festival Midrash Meditations & Muse:
The journey towards the Goose was seemingly filled with emotional trip wire and i wasn’t quite sure i was gonna make it this year. Oh, it’s always a risk, isn’t it? Whilst in the process of allowing yourself to be “seen”; hyper-sensitivities & trauma triggers abounding.
When i say “home-coming” i’m also inclusively implying that sometimes prodigals are greeted with the “older-brother’s” opinions rather than the unconditional love of Abba.
I found myself wondering the implications of that whilst listening to some of Teresa Pasquale’s tent-focus of “Sacred Wounds”. Her salient thoughts on healing spiritual trauma are keenly needed.
Whenever or wherever there is “Festival” of sorts, there is always some level of unknown emotional risks factors that are going to challenge our spiritual barometer to love. That is always the High Wire Act. It’s easy to love when the wind conditions are right; with buffers and bolsters in place.
Are we going to risk the trauma trip wire ?
A Festival is far from a sterile environment so things are gonna get messy.
Perfectionistic, idealistic and utopia biases collide with mud slides, porta- potties, rainy deluge and random bits, bobs & bolts of lightning. Some of the “discussions” around the tents were a bit blustery to go along with the wind. Thank G-d for the “Beer” & the “Carnival de Resistance” TENTS, as they were communion in many situations!
There was tension on the tent poles and there is need of those stressors to keep the conversations going. How we struggle or relax into that tension is primarily how we are going to flesh out those areas where we really don’t know how to love well, or in some areas, love at all.
In retrospect i wish i had some super-power time machine ability to get to hear some of the tent-talks that i missed.
I’m thinking of Katherine Wilson’s “The Dark Side of Community” -
“What leads us to hate and fear those who are different than us? How can we build strong communities without alienating people at or beyond the borders of our group? What’s at the heart of the matter when we use polarizing “us/them” talk? Listen as Katherine Wilson shares about the ways traditional community-building often leads directly to mass violence. Based on her work in genocide prevention and reconciliation, she proposes a radical re-envisioning of the way we think about community – one that would allow us to draw those people into our circle who might otherwise most threaten our identity.”
That’s a Big Conversation that is so worth having!
I surely had a good excuse for missing that one, as it was happening simultaneously as Homebrewed Christianity & Beer-n-Hymns. Which is where you will find this Whiskatarian Mystic most days spiritually. Perhaps formulating my own band, law firm or developing a new trinitarian theology, “Spark, Snark & Song.”
I was challenged to keep my own list of “buzz” words to a minimum.
However, i cannot hold my tongue any longer on one pet phrase that i’ve heard far too much about.
Stating an ethos as intentionality is one thing; however the phrase, “Intentional Community” drives me bat-$#!t crazy.
IF there is Community, by its very INCARNATE DNA, it IS intentional.
If the redundancy of the phrase actually helped in the day to day Ministry of the Mundane, i think i could deal with it. Rather, it is a un-intentional/accidental reminder as to what we are NOT doing. End Kvetch.
The Wild Goose is in it’s 4th year and it feels like it.
Anything at 4 years old is still formulating its identity and prone to bandwagoning on that stage of development. Wine and Cool-aide tasting vary greatly; but don’t ask me as i can’t see through the glass from which i’m dimly drinking. i’m busy being blinded by the beer-spit mud that is in my eye, after someone got the log out of it.
There was “the” protestor. Ok, there may have been more, but i only honestly saw one. He was holding a sign in the pouring rain and shouting through a bullhorn. From my understanding, he was offered a free ticket, a space to sleep, food to eat and the opportunity to openly dialogue about his concerns. Kudos Good Goose Goers & Doers.
I think if he were an Angelic Being and we were being mindful to entertain strangers, perhaps, it was because we needed to recognize & embody our reaction, hurt and prejudice in order to deal with it.
Spiritual Independence is not the same as Spiritual Self-sufficiency. We were designed to need one another and be the Body of Christ.
One of the most hopefully challenging voices at the Goose was that of Romal Tune. His book “God’s Graffiti”, provokes to action our response, as he uses biblical parallels and parables to demonstrate how God used “high risk” youth’s as game changers.
Romal’s testimony and talent is balanced with grace and compassion. it was a pleasure getting to speak with him. I’m secretly hoping he and Harry Baker get to share some of their Spoken Word Poetry Slam skills. Urban Dictionary will have it’s own thesaurus. From a meditation standpoint, it was truly a foot-washing.
Tripp Fuller, Doug Pagitt and Brian McLaren were up to their interview/ podcast/radio show hosting antics. Always good to see Brian & Doug in their element and grateful that they keeps showing up to the table, such the wisdom of the elders!
Tripp and the “Homebrewed Christianity Podcast”- Gang, were squished and soggy under a tight tent capacity. Amy Piatt & Micky Jones, you have my kudos, blessing and sympathy!
The amount of beer loving theo-nerds were sorely underestimated in numbers and the tent pegs might want to be stretched for the next event!
Thankfully, “The Moonshine Jesus Show” was added to the Homebrewed vat of conspirators and assisted in the folly. I’m not quite sure i’d call it loquacious or liquidatious?
From my sensory-integration background, i’m thinking that some of that compressed space was good for those of us that tend to stay in our head.
My favorite quote by Tripp Fuller- “pass the moonshine bottle to Cathryn, she’s “charismatic”.
My friend Stephen Roach and the musical entourage of SONGS OF WATER played on Saturday night. So good to see them. Turned into a mosh-pit of muddy wild dancers as they played! Amazing musical skill and passion. Their new CD is in the works and i DO suggest you give them a gander!
“The Carnival De Resistance” was more than a highlight at the event. For me it’s what Kingdom Circus looks like through a Kaleidoscope!
Loving, living, teaching, training, dancing, acrobatics, fire twirling, joy bringing, Holy Spirit releasing and Happy Anarchy establishing, traveling ragamuffin artisans. In my humble opinion, THIS is really what the Wild Goose is about.
(I’m a little biased towards these types of Moving Meditation & Living Parables of Hope... as these are really at core, my people, just say’in)
Watching all the challenging dynamics of such a diverse group of people, i am astounded by the amount of work that went into such an event. Juggling agenda's are kin with parting the red sea on a practical miracle scale. There were sooooooo many that made this event happen. I am grateful to their hard work & tremendous efforts in seeing The Goose’s Wings stretched.
There were many... MANY behind the scenes!
Holly Roach and Steve Knight, again, you are such ambassadors of grace!
Rebekah Berndt, THANK YOU for the ticket and for making room for me on so many levels. Let the house parties continue! Adele, Laura, Paul, Rebekah and Julie- could not have asked for better house mates! Spiked Kombucha next time! You guys really are amazing and i’m so blessed to have gotten to hang out!
Phil Wyman, Thank you again for support and love. You need to go hang with the JONES!
Julie Clawson you are truly “a partner in crime” and a one armed bandit of Love! (had to do PART of a Dr. Who Episode title in there!) --------
My favorite Julie story - We were wandering down by the main stage and went into the “book tent”. I thought since i don’t have a copy of ANY of Julie’s books, (HINT)- i’d make a big deal by getting her to sign one!
(she still doesn’t realize that i was going to make a very BIG deal by playing the worst FAN ever and faint with her signature)
Well, that didn’t happen as i asked the lady behind the table. “Excuse me, do you have My friends book, “The Hunger Games and the Gospel”?” To which she replied, “No, we only carry Christian books here.” -
On THAT note, I’m incredibly grateful to Gareth Higgins as the Founding Director of the Wild Goose. I was sorely disappointed that i was unaware of the event in which he was shown appreciation for his work the last 4 +++years; in seeing it’s fruition.
I’m guessing i need to read the Event Brochure more closely? Seriously folks, we need to do better at Honoring Pioneers!
Event curation holds it’s own place in heaven i think.
At WG2013, Gareth gave this injured hippy-chick a lift in a golf-cart, when i was recovering from a nerve injury. I didn’t know who he was at that point but was really grateful as i was in a lot of pain. Such a small thing, seemingly. However, it speaks volumes to the integrity of people when they are walking in the day to day moving meditation of simply doing what is needed, despite task and title. Gareth, thanks for leading by example.
This year felt a bit different. Prior to coming to the event i was hanging out with Jesus in a prayer space and saw a Golden Egg and it being placed on a auction table instead of a nest. Little odd.
When i pressed into it a bit, this is what i felt was downloaded so to speak.
There is such gold birthed here out of love and freedom.
it’s worth cannot be counted in monetary measures.
What will be the future of that birth? Will it be loved, nurtured and protected; to be free to spread it wings and develop into it’s own identity or put up on auctioning table and sold to the highest bidder?
I’m sensing that it has to do with our priorities and how we view Worth vs. Money. I am a part of the Goose, so therefore, need to look at it as well and do my own internal checking on motives and desires.
Looking forward to the next! I always leave the Wild Goose with my love tank on full!